More Readings

Supports Other Awareness Practices

The practice of metta meditation is a beautiful support to other awareness practices. One recites specific words and phrases evoking a “boundless warm-hearted feeling.” The strength of this feeling is not limited to or by family, religion, or social class. We begin with ourself and gradually extend the wish for well-being and happiness to all beings. – Metta Institute 

Unconditional, Inclusive Love

Loving-kindness, or metta, as it is called in the Pali language, is unconditional, inclusive love, a love with wisdom. It has no conditions; it does not depend on whether one “deserves” it or not; it is not restricted to friends and family; it extends out from personal categories to include all living beings. There are no expectations of anything in return. This is the ideal, pure love, which everyone has in potential. We begin with loving ourselves, for unless we have a measure of this unconditional love and acceptance for ourselves, it is difficult to extend it to others. Then we include others who are special to us, and, ultimately, all living things. Gradually, both the visualization and the meditation phrases blend into the actual experience, the feeling of loving kindness. – The Center for Contemplative Mind in Society 

Important Aspect is Cultivating Metta Towards Ourselves

In this meditation practice, we also cultivate metta towards ourselves, so that we experience less internal conflict, and learn to appreciate ourselves more. This is a particularly important aspect of the practice. It’s traditionally held that we all cherish ourselves, and that what we need to do is to expand our love from ourselves to others… And yet many of us in the west have been brought up to hate ourselves. We don’t thoroughly hate ourselves, of course. In fact we tend to treat ourselves very well! But we do tend to keep up an undercurrent of negative self-talk. And to the extent to which we hate ourselves, we’re unable to relate healthily to others Lovingkindness practice helps us to feel more positive, accepting, kind, and patient toward ourselves, in order that we can be more compassionate and loving toward others. – wildmind buddhist meditation